If you’re an empath, you know what it feels like to feel everything and everyone.
Empaths are like energy sponges. We pick up on the people and environments around us. Our compassionate, sensitive hearts, and well-tuned antennae can be a gift to us, and to those who get to be loved by us. But, our sensitive sides can also get us into trouble in relationships, if we lack awareness and the ability to manage our spidey-sense. Diving into relationships and the modern day dating world can lead an empath to a broken heart, or to the love of a lifetime.
If you’re an empath, read on, my friend, and we’ll navigate this dating world together.
The gift and the curse of a big heart.
Empaths have a knack for compassion. And I don’t mean your every day kindness to strangers. I mean, deep, loving acceptance and love for humans…even those who might seem hard to love to others. We have big hearts. This can be a gift in dating, because it opens us to many possibilities in partners. We can fall in love with many types of people. We can also create deep, loving, conscious relationships with a willing partner. This can make love easy, but it can also make love a danger zone if our compassion makes us ignore or minimize negative qualities in a partner that should be red flags not to be ignored. Why is this?
Empaths can be beacons for the broken.
Have you had a string of relationships with people who seem to need some healing or “fixing”? They might seem like they are empaths in hiding, who haven’t realized they are empaths. Or they might just be struggling in life. If you have a tendency to attract partners who haven’t done their own healing work to deal with issues like addiction, abuse, or trauma, you might want to take a look at this pattern. You may have your own history with the same issues. Empaths often struggle with what could be identified as codependent behaviors, because of pain in their past, or because of their knack for compassion and care-taking.
On a spiritual level, empaths serve a purpose to help others heal. We can feel the pain in others, and find it difficult to turn away from someone who needs healing or guidance. It is vital to gain awareness of this pattern, and to learn how to set boundaries in your relationships. It’s not to say that we don’t offer some level of healing to each other in our relationships. However, if you see you have a pattern of giving more than you get, healing more than you’re healed, or loving more than you’re feeling loved, take note. Awareness and action to change this pattern will help you find a healthier and more balanced relationship. If you feel that you’re here to bring healing to others, try harnessing that gift into a healing profession instead of offering it to your partners. Bottom line…you may be here to help heal the world, but you don’t have to make it your mission to heal your partners.
Know your worth.
Many empaths struggle with anxiety and self-worth issues. We are highly sensitive and sometimes we misinterpret the heavy doses of information we receive from the world around us. We often have a tendency to personalize the emotions and actions of others, because we literally feel them within us. Empaths are masters at self-sacrifice, and underneath that can be a belief system that tells us we are not good enough. Mix this with our ability to love and accept others with deep compassion, and we can easily get caught in a relationship with someone who validates our fears and insecurities. Recognize your worth, and seek out partners who recognize your worth.
You know what’s coming before your partner does.
As empaths, our intuition is constantly speaking to us. We often know what will happen in a relationship the moment we meet someone (but if we’re not tuned in to our intuition, we may confuse wishful thinking with that true, gut level knowledge of truth). If we sense something positive with a partner, we may feel excited, and allow ourselves to become too vulnerable, too fast. We may share too much, or move too fast in a relationship because we “know” something our partner doesn’t know. But, if a partner doesn’t share our empathic gifts, he or she may not be ready to move quite so fast, and may feel threatened by our deep dive into the relationship. Its best for us to learn to move slowly and allow our partners to fall into love with us at their own pace.
Likewise, also pay attention to those intuitive messages that warn you about a partner. How many times have you stayed in a relationship too long? Or you knew from the beginning that you shouldn’t date someone but you did it anyway? Our egos and our desire to heal and love can sometimes overrule our uncanny knack for knowing what is best for us.
We can also sense when something is “off” with our partners. This can be anxiety provoking for us, especially if we don’t know what exactly is “off,” or if your partner can’t address it with us. Don’t make assumptions based on what you’re sensing. Instead, use good, clear communication with the intention of curiosity with your partner. Ask, explore, and express yourself. Don’t ignore your gut, but remember that you may be ten steps ahead of your partner. Good communication is key.
Ground and protect yourself.
Before you go on any date, do some breathing and energetic protection exercises to help keep your boundaries strong. If you’re not sure how to manage your empathic traits, there are plenty of resources on the internet or in books. It’s also helpful to keep a journal of your ups and downs in any relationship, and to identify your intuitions. Over time, we tend to forget things, or we don’t realize how much time can actually pass in an unhealthy relationship. You’ll be able to look back and decipher patterns in you and your partner, instead of getting lost in the moment.
Dating as an empath can be a gift and a challenge. Understanding yourself better, and learning how to protect yourself in love can go a long way in helping you find a loving, healthy, conscious relationship.
Article originally published on Meetmindful.com by Chelli Pumphrey